“There must be
another way to do this.”
The story of Contract Mill started from that simple thought. As busy lawyers we were faced with challenges that are universal: How could I sell more legal services without necessarily needing to extend my working hours? How could those services be created efficiently, at right (accessible) cost and still profitably? How could we serve our internal clients in international organizations faster and easier? How could we enable business owners to do more themselves without always needing to involve the legal department? How could we manage our knowledge better and help colleagues to benefit more from it? How could we make a bigger impact in improving access to justice?
We quickly realized that the root cause for these problems was the same: manual way of working. Manual drafting of documents is time consuming, yet the document needs to be created and adjusted to each situation at hand. As long as we worked the same way we did hundred years ago, our challenges would never be solved. Artisanal way to deliver legal services is not only slow and inefficient, but it does not allow scalable creation and delivery of those services either. In one hour you can sell one hour of service. But how about selling three hours worth of services in just one hour..? Wouldn’t that also help legal service providers to bridge the gap between the needs of support, and the possibility of buying those services?
The answer became quickly evident: in order to create digitally supported service delivery, one needs to have the “back-end” automated with technology – meaning automated creation of documents.
“In my past as General Counsel, I always wanted to help my colleagues to do more by themselves and work “lean” also in the legal department. At the same time I hoped that the law firms that I used would have found ways to provide commodity services in cost efficient way so that I could have used my budget to more complicated matters. With the help of Contract Mill these targets can be met – for the benefit of us all!”
Kaisa Kromhof, Co-Founder
We were of course not the first ones to think about this, document automation had been done for over twenty years already. But – what we found out is that the markets were missing a modern, state of the art product that would combine easiness of use to powerful logic. As chronically busy lawyers, we knew how critical the user experience is when trying to implement anything new in organizations. We saw a huge underserved market – law firms and companies who needed document automation, but the solution was not accessible for them. The reasons behind the difficulties were for example lack of IT-resources needed for implementation, rigorous business models and most importantly, dull user experience.
So we decided to to build a product that we would love to use ourselves – beautiful design, self-explanatory to use, fun to work with and accessible for everyone. And the rest is history!
Our story in short
Establishment of the company. At this point we didn’t realize yet that it was not very common to be fully female-founded legal tech company. We just went on with our vision!
Beta-version out for client testing and validation, developing MVP
MVP on the markets. Excited welcome by customers worldwide, market response confirmed the need for easy to use yet powerful product. Building extensive style editor capabilities. Finalist in the Dutch Legal Tech Competition.
Customers in over 14 different countries, selected as participant to PWC Legal Tech Scale Program in London, closing a financing round, developing Contract Mill 2.0, winning our first Big4 client!
Launching Contract Mill 2.0, first in the world 100% visual, no-code automation interface, scaling globally – join our journey!
Raising over €1 MEUR Seed round from prominent international investors. Chosen by leading bay area law firm Wilson Sonsini Goodrich & Rosati as their partner for the Build-A-Bot program.